The long-standing rivalry between the UCLA Bruins and USC Trojans stands as one of the more unusual in NCAA sports because both teams are located in Los Angeles, separated by only 12 miles. So when it comes to supporting either of these fine institutions, their fans are loyal to a fault. During tournament season, many are glued to the tube to watch these athletes and other collegiate outfits battle it out on the court. Quite a few head to sports bars, including these that are considered some of the best places in L.A. to watch live college basketball.
901 Bar & Grill
2902 S. Figueroa St.
Los Angeles, CA 90007
Established in 1947, this rousing sports bar is considered a second home for USC basketball disciples. In fact, holders of current USC ID cards receive an immediate 25-percent discount off all food and beverages between the hours of 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. It’s here where the Trojan spirit is further enthused by a bank of 50″ plasma TV monitors within a lively atmosphere that is simply infectious. This downtown spot near the Coliseum offers some of the best-tasting chicken dishes and pizza pies found in this enthusiastic and sports-minded chunk of L.A.
Rivalry Sports Bar and Grill
6311 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90048
When it’s time for the UCLA Bruins to make a run for the NCAA Tournament, this social gathering place is jam-packed with sports fanatics. Those seeking quality grub and grog will be more than satisfied during a visit to the modern and spacious site, where a parade of HDTV monitors command center stage. While rooting for their favorite team, foodies are treated to an array of chef-prepared, slow-smoked meat dishes and an extensive selection of adult beverages and signature cocktails. Even if guests choose to dine alfresco, there’s a TV monitor outdoors, too.
7250 Melrose Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90046
The dark walls and furniture inside this upscale gastropub make it easy for sports fans to watch college basketball on any of the site’s more than 50 HDTV monitors. This location’s entertainment options expand to incorporate live music, karaoke and trivia games. Top-notch comedy shows have featured such headliners as Dave Chappelle, Daniel Tosh and Joe Rogan. The bar also slings a wide selection of beer, wine and hand-crafted specialty cocktails. While watching the games, be sure to sample its ambrosial food menu that includes braised short-rib tacos and artisan burgers.
30 Washington Blvd.
Venice, CA 90292
During college basketball season, expect loads of sports enthusiasts to pack into this popular cantina that’s located near the Venice Beach Boardwalk. With dozens of HDTV monitors scattered throughout the bar, Cabo Venice has become a chosen hangout for those locals and tourists who like to watch games while downing a cold beer or frothy margarita. In addition to a broad range of quenchable adult beverages, this spot offers a mouth-watering slate of Mexican food items, including sizzling fajita platters. Those on a squeezed budget really appreciate this party place’s two-for-one daily specials.
The Tavern On Main
123 Main St.
El Segundo, CA 90245
Established in 2002, this neighborhood spot has become a chosen site for college basketball supporters who enjoy eating hearty portions of beef, chicken or pork while watching the games. A staunch supporter of both rivalry home teams, this friendly establishment has named two tasty dishes after the UCLA Bruins and USC Trojans. Patrons are surrounded by plenty of TV monitors while sampling such tempting treats as chicken-fried steak and eggs or California-Philly cheesesteak. For a down-home experience, placing this Mayberry-themed site on your radar will be a smart call.
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